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Poster: Dudley Dead Date: Mar 5, 2010 8:12am
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: The Decline and Fall of the Garcia Empire

Being a Dylan-head , I had mixed feelings concerning their Dylan covers, some came off quite well... ( this is a subject for another post !), but it was hard not to see all the covers , as a cover( ouch ) for the fact that they were not writing their own quality material .
I go on in the late 70's , and did see some fantastic shows . The awareness that "it wasn't the same", came slowly . I Was at the Ventura shows in 82, and remember being disappointed by the first show . And by the mid 80's it was clear that the band had seen better days . BUT, there were those moments that were uniquely great in a way that only the Dead could do ; and it was always fun . After 90,didn't see them much, but still there were those moments . On 12/16/94 , the jam out of Estimated ( with Branford ), was one of the most amazing bits of music I personally witnessed from the band .
Being a Dylan fan , I was used to ups and downs ...

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Poster: staggerleib Date: Mar 5, 2010 10:21am
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: The Decline and Fall of the Garcia Empire

I began at the auditorium theatre in chicago, in 1977. Saw some epic Uptown theatre shows as well. While, the year 1977 holds probably the best (IMHO) shows, there were some amazing shows throughout the 80's. There was, again IMHO, never a another month like May 77, but they never were short of clunkers. No matter what period you love, there were some real misses.

Personally, I love the Dylan covers, particularly those of the JGB throughout. There were some great "When I Paint my Masterpiece's", and some phenomenal Tangled Up in Blue's.

I love Dylan. I love the fact that Dylan himself recognized that nobody played his songs as well as Jerry did. I find it amazing how many people can cover Dylan, and how easily they can turn these songs into their own. I believe that this is a true measure of his amazing songwriting abilities. Arguably, he can be said to be covered better than he can be said to perform. I personally don't hold this opinion, but I've had conversations supporting both sides of the equation.

It should be noted that more music in the JGB pantheon were covers than were Jerry's and Hunter's songs. At least in performance. I loved the fact that in many cases you'd never know what he'd pull out and play.

In my mind, a Jerry Garcia Band show was a far more spontaneous and enjoyable experience, especially as the Dead themselves became a much larger draw. To this day, I listen at least as much to the live JGB performances as I do the Dead. I wonder if we could still find those great Tigerbolt Jerry project collections. I have them, luckily. These were awesome.

pardon my ramble

This post was modified by staggerleib on 2010-03-05 18:21:19

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Poster: Dudley Dead Date: Mar 5, 2010 4:41pm
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: The Decline and Fall of the Garcia Empire

Garcia was one of the great Dylan interrupters . He also covered songs from Dylan's 70's albums , not just the better known 60's ones . I recall reading Weir saying they were thinking of doing more Dylan songs, hopefully , some later ones . I think Bobby could have done a nice "Man In The Long Black Coat", maybe jerry could have done "Blind Willie McTell", or "Dignity" .
A lot of times , I might prefer hearing Garcia, or even Weir sing Dylan's songs live that Dylan himself ( excepting Dylan's 60's live versions which can be scary good ). Listen to Jerry's version of "Vision's of Johanna" , for the "Philzone" album. Even with the lyric flub, He REALLY means it ! He treats this great song with the love and respect it deserves . I just wish Dylan loved his own songs as much as Jerry did .